Source: Downing Street
The Government has extended the Stay at Home provisions for 'at least 3 weeks'. Some of the notable elements of the statement are:
There are indications that the measures we have put in place have been successful in slowing down the spread of the virus.
But, SAGE also say that it is a mixed and inconsistent picture and, in some settings, infections are still likely to be increasing.
In sum, the very clear advice we have received is that any change to our social distancing measures now would risk a significant increase in the spread of the virus. That would threaten a second peak of the virus, and substantially increase the number of deaths.
It would undo the progress made to date, and as a result, would require an even longer period of the more restrictive social distancing measures. So early relaxation would do more damage to the economy over a longer period.
But based on this advice, the Government has determined that current measures must remain in place for at least the next 3 weeks.
Let me set out 5 specific things which the Government will need to be satisfied of before we will consider it safe to adjust any of the current measures:
First, we must protect the NHS’s ability to cope.
Second, we need to see a sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rates from coronavirus so we are confident that we have moved beyond the peak.
Third, we need to have reliable data from SAGE showing that the rate of infection is decreasing to manageable levels across the board.
Fourth, we need to be confident that the range of operational challenges, including testing capacity and PPE, are in hand, with supply able to meet future demand.
Fifth, and this is really crucial, we need to be confident that any adjustments to the current measures will not risk a second peak of infections that overwhelm the NHS.
The worst thing we could do now is ease up too soon and allow a second peak of the virus to hit the NHS and hit the British people.
So please please stay home, save lives and protect the NHS.
The full statement is available here: